What is a Learning Disorder or Disability?
A learning disorder is a neurological disorder that causes one’s brain to be wired a little differently than most. Individuals with learning disorders are generally as smart as or smarter than peers, but, because of the neurological disorder, they struggle more to learn certain concepts such as math or writing. Common learning disabilities are Reading Disorder (formally called Dyslexia), Math Disorder, and Disorders of Written Expression.
Sometimes over the course of obtaining an education a student may struggle in a particular class or on a particular academic task, which can affect learning as well as achievement. For some, this may have been a lifelong struggle while for others it may only be noticeable at the college level where expectations are substantially higher. Learning Disorders should not be confused with academic struggles due to difficult material. For example calculus III is hard. If you had always done well in math and now find calculus III difficult, that is because it is difficult and in this example it is very likely not related to a learning disability.
Below is a list of symptoms of learning disorders. Use this list to determine whether a learning disabilities evaluation may be of help. You may have a learning disability if you have a few of these symptoms:
- Difficulty following lectures in class
- Slow reading rate or frequent need to reread passages of text over and over
- Difficulty expressing yourself in words or in writing
- Longer than average study times
- Feeling well-prepared for a test only to obtain a low or failing score
- Confusing similar words when reading or speaking
- Mixing up mathematical symbols or letters
- Difficulty grasping mathematical concepts
- Problems understanding graphs, diagrams or punctuation
This list is not exhaustive, but if you experience a few of these symptoms, or others that seem to make academic performance difficult, a learning evaluation may be of help. Though there is no guarantee that you will receive academic accommodation, you will receive suggestions to improve performance. Please send us an email: email@example.com and ask to be put on the learning disability waiting list.
Unfortunately assessments take time and often we have a 4-6 month waiting list to be assessed. If you believe you need an assessment the sooner you contact us, the better.
Learning Disorder vs. Attention Deficit/Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) ADHD can often look like a learning disorder and can have very similar results regarding academic struggles. However, testing for ADHD is different and generally you can be seen in the clinic much sooner. Just call the main desk (801-863-8876) and ask to set up an appointment for ADHD testing.
Below is a list of symptoms of ADHD. Use this list to help determine whether an ADHD evaluation may be of help:
- Difficulty sustaining concentration
- Forgetting keys, text books, and/or homework
- Difficulty following class lectures
- Difficulty organizing materials to study
- Difficulty remaining seated for entire class period
- Tendency to blurt out answers or talk over peers
- Frequent need to read passages over and over
This list is not exhaustive, but if you experience any of these symptoms or other inattentive symptoms that seem to make academic performance difficult, an ADHD evaluation may be of help. Though there is no guarantee that you will receive academic accommodation, you will receive suggestions to improve performance. Please call 801-863-8876 or drop by SC 221 to make an appointment.
Who Can Be Tested?
At UVU's Student Health Services, evaluations are performed to assess a student’s learning strengths as well as areas in need of improvement. Additionally, this evaluation can determine if a specific disability exists and can provide detailed recommendations regarding academic functioning. Unfortunately, we can only test current UVU students.
What Does a Learning Disability or ADHD Assessment Entail?
Testing to assess for a Learning Disability usually consists of three, two-hour appointments. If your therapist feels that other tests are warranted to help them make an accurate determination, sometimes additional appointments are needed. Testing usually involved reading passages, completing mathematical problems, remembering a list of works or numbers and/or solving puzzles. The testing and interpreting process takes time and is not a process that can be completed in one session or in one week. After testing is complete, if a diagnosis is warranted, the therapist will write a report, which they will then share with you, which will explain your academic strengths and weaknesses and give you and Accessibility Services ideas for how to help you be more successful in school.
Testing to assess for ADHD usually consists of two to three one-hour sessions. If a diagnosis is warranted, you will be provided a report which can be used for Accessibility Services as well as to assist a medical professional in deciding if medication is also warranted.
$250. For a Learning Disability Evaluation
$60. For an ADHD evaluation
For Learning Disability testing: send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
For ADHD testing: call the front desk at 801-863-8876